As oTree Virtual Machine Manager provides useful commands to administrators of the oTree Virtual Machine Image, it requires superuser rights to perform its actions. Therefore, install ovmm under the provided administrator account.

Preconfigured Systems

We created a Virtualbox image for oTree users based on ovmm and on “Ubuntu 16.04.2 Server 64bit” and comes with three desktops Gnome, LXDE, and fluxbox to allow it to work on systems with varying level RAM.

The images all contain a user account called otreeadmin that comes preconfigured with the set of end user commands provided by ovmm. The images further each contain an account ovmmadmin from where ovmm can be used to create more accounts.

You find the images here: oTree Virtual Machine Images

We also spent some time on trying to figure out what tools could be useful to the end users. Therefore all images with the following tools preinstalled.

Giggle:GUI for Git,
Atom:Great free IDE with many plugins,
pgAdmin 3:GUI for postreSQL database systems


The following components need to be present on your system to use ovmm:

ftp:required for ftp access to the account
git:version control
postgresql:database server + development packages
pip:package manager for Python
python3-venv:virtual environment for Python 3
redis-server:remote dictionary server
samba:Windows share access
screen:detachable consoles
mailutils:sending mails if otree stops unexpectedly
ssh:remote shell access
xterm:Linux terminal emulator
zenity:GTK 3.0 dialog handler

In most Debian based Linux environments you can install these packages from the repositories like so:

$ sudo apt install ftp nginx samba screen mailutils ssh ufw postgresql git  \
                   postgresql-server-dev-all python3-pip zenity             \
                   python3-venv redis-server xterm

Please see the documentation of your Linux distribution for help.

Stable release

To install oTree Virtual Machine Manager, run this command in your terminal:

$ sudo pip3 install ovmm

This is the preferred method to install oTree Virtual Machine Manager, as it will always install the most recent stable release.

If you don’t have pip installed, this Python installation guide can guide you through the process.

From sources

The sources for oTree Virtual Machine Manager can be downloaded from the Github repo.

You can either clone the public repository:

$ git clone git://

Or download the tarball:

$ curl  -OL

Once you have a copy of the source, you can install it with:

$ sudo python3 install

Recommendations for Additional Software

To enhance the working experience for the oTree end user we recommend to also install the following software packages.

chromium:Chromium browser is the Open Source version of Chrome browser. As it is the most frequently used browser on the web it is the recommended testing environment for your oTree apps.
conky:Desktop system monitor. ovmm statics provides a preconfigured conky configuration file which is unzipped into the user’s $HOME directory and provides helpful system information while running oTree.
Atom:Open Source IDE with many features.
pgAdmin III:Graphical user interface for postgreSQL database servers. Helps with understanding oTree and data recovery if something goes wrong.

In Ubuntu and official derivatives you can install chromium, conky, and pgAdmin via the package manager, like so:

$ sudo apt-get install conky-all chromium-browser pgadmin3

It is recommended to obtain LightTable from the official website as the community packages are deprecated.

You can find the website here: